The authorized version from Todd McKenney, who resigned his seat in the Ohio House to succeed retired Summit County Probate Court Judge Bill Spicer, was that he didn't want to be distracted from the court's business by campaigning in "difficult" primary and general elections.
The unauthorized version is that Summit County Republican Chairman Alex Arshinkoff decided that the probate court wasn't big enough for him and McKenney. According to several politically active lawyers - Republicans and Democrats - that I talked to, the split occurred when McKenney made a couple of appointments to the MRDD and Metro Parks boards that conflicted with the chairman's well protected private stock..
It wasn't at all out of character for Arshinkoff to explode and send an emissary to McKenney advising him that he would not be supported by the party (i.e., Alex) in a primary race for the job. And indeed, there would have been a primary as Republican Common Pleas Judge Alison McCarty has declared her candidacy for the Probate bench. (Her opponent will be Democratic Common Pleas Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer.)
Without party money, it would have been so much harder for McKenney to hold on to the seat that has long been a gleam in the Democrats' eye.